SLM 508 Learning Technologies

Learning in the 21st Century

Final Reflections from SLM 508 July 25, 2012

Filed under: Lesson Plans,Personal,Professional Development,SLM 508,Technology — Mrs.Hamilton @ 9:28 pm

SLM 508 has had a profound impact on my summer professional development.  Most of the classes that I have taken at McDaniel have been completely focused on librarianship and included many assignments that did not have any immediate real-world practical value.  While this class will definitely impact my abilities to be a successful librarian, I felt that the things that I worked on in this class helped me to be classroom ready now.  In essence, I geeked out a little bit.


This class offered me the chance to explore a variety of new technology tools and practices. I am now a blogger, a tweeter @mrshamilton13, a Diigo user.  I can screencast, Voicethread, Google Doc, and so much more. I have been amazed by how much professional content is available that I never knew about, and I know that my professional development will continue to be influenced by these new (to me) technologies for years to come.


I think that one of the most powerful lessons that I have learned in this class is to not be afraid.  When you look at today’s digital native, one of the things that sets him apart from the immigrants is the openness with which he approaches technology.  We cannot learn unless we try, and it is easy to shy away from trying.


I have also learned that you have to seek out what you need. One of my chief complaints with my online classes has been the lack of human camaraderie within the classes. You log on, you post your stuff, and you leave.  You never really take the time to get to know people, you never have people to commiserate with when things are not going your way, you never have someone to ask questions when you don’t want to post them on the discussion boards.  During module two, we explored social network tools. Twitter, Skype, Google Docs.  I have continued to use them to communicate with my classmates for the rest of the class and they have made all the difference. I posted my wiki with confidence because I had already processed many of the kinks out with my classmates prior to post.  It has been a powerful lesson, and one I will use in the last two classes I have with McDaniel.


I am leaving 508 with some great tools in my plugged in pocket and I am excited to share them with my 9th graders next year.  I am also excited to share what I have learned with my colleagues.  One of my key roles as a librarian will be to share new ways to access information…that has taken on a whole new meaning with technology.  I can’t wait.


Social and Collaborative Media: Why Educators Should Use Social Networking July 13, 2012

Filed under: Lesson Plans,Professional Development,SLM 508,Technology — Mrs.Hamilton @ 9:27 pm

As social media plays a more influential role in the lives of our students, educators must begin to adapt and integrate themselves into the social media scene.  This VoiceThread explores why educators should embrace social media and how they can utilize it in the classroom.  I talk specifically about how Twitter can play a huge role in the professional development of educators as well as foster discussion amongst students.  I also explore Edmodo and it’s possible presence in the classroom.  Enjoy.


Good Reads for extended reading July 10, 2012

Filed under: Lesson Plans,SLM 508,Technology,Uncategorized — Mrs.Hamilton @ 5:20 pm
One of the big changes in our curriculum next year as we adopt the Common Core Standards is to get students reading outside of the classroom.  Our English classes will now include required reading at home in addition to the text that students are discussing in the classroom.  With this in mind, Good Reads is a great way to connect students to choices.  The bookshelf I have embedded below is designed to highlight books that would fall under the 9th grade memoir unit.  If students could not find a book to read, they could go to this virtual bookshelf for ideas.


Telling Our Story

5 of 5 stars true
A powerful tale of tough choices. Every human should read this book.
Warriors Don't Cry
5 of 5 stars true
A powerful tale about what it was like to be one of the Little Rock Nine.
In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer
4 of 5 stars true
A different perspective from the classic Holocaust memoir told from the perspective of the resistance.

Share book reviews and ratings with Mrs. H., and even join a book club on Goodreads.


Learning is Alive….With Technology! July 2, 2012

Filed under: Lesson Plans,SLM 508,Technology — Mrs.Hamilton @ 1:40 am

This week I had the opportunity to attend a four day professional development seminar based off of the Teachers’ Curriculum Institute‘s Bring Learning Alive! book. It was presented by a Social Studies teacher in my county and the purpose of the seminar was to learn interactive strategies for my non-social studies classroom from a program designed to make learning social studies fun.  I have to say, it was one of the best professional developments that I have been to in a very long time. I am really excited to try out some of these new strategies on my students next year.

One of the strategies that we learned about was called a visual discovery.  Visual discoveries use a series of spiraled questions about an image or a series of images to introduce a new concept and get students thinking about what they already know.  In my Educational Technologies class (I know, I am supposed to be on summer break…not catching up on all this learning) we have been talking about how to use new technology to engage students in the classroom.  With this in mind, I decided to use the tool Voice Thread to create a Visual discovery about what it was like to immigrate to the United States via Ellis Island.  Student can post their responses to my recorded questions directly onto the slide show.  As students interact with the slide show we will have a conversation about what they know, what they deduce, and what questions they might have.  Check it out at

Overall, this technology worked really well with this strategy.  I cant wait to play around with it more and use it with my students next school year.


Flickr Slide Shows

Filed under: Lesson Plans,SLM 508,Technology — Mrs.Hamilton @ 12:17 am

This is a continuation of my post last week on Flickr galleries.  This slide show was created with my own photos from Snowmageddon 2010.  This would tie in with the 9th grade memoir unit.  In this unit we talk about how (and why) writers focus on one moment of their lives and choose to write about them.  I would use these photos as a writing prompt as we talk about honing in on the memories.  With each photo, I will have the students write about what they are reminded of and what they remember from that snow storm.  I will also have my own story prepared.  After we have viewed the photos and jotted down our memories, we will share our thoughts with the class.  What the students will see is that we each have different memories from that day.  Our age, location, and family roles played a huge part in our interpretation and reaction to the snowstorm. We can later refine our stories into our own vignettes about Snowmageddon 2010.

Link to Digging out of Snowmageddon 2012 Slide Show on Flickr


Stretching my Boundaries July 1, 2012

Filed under: Lesson Plans,Personal,SLM 508,Technology — Mrs.Hamilton @ 4:30 am

So this week, my boundaries have been tested by a piece of technology.  My classmates and I have been experimenting with new technologies that we can use in the classroom.  I had a lot of fun designing a lesson in Voice Thread (I am not going to go into too much detail because I will be posting about that later this week) and thought I would share with you a tutorial that I created that walks a user through how to create a voice thread presentation.  Enjoy!

Voice Thread Screencast